How to bet the A. P. Smithwick Memorial Stakes

July 18th, 2023

A total of nine steeplechasers will go 2 1/16 miles over National Fences in the $150,000 A. P. Smithwick Memorial S. (G1) at Saratoga on Wednesday. The opener on the fine day of racing looks to be a competitive contest, led by a pair of runners from the Jack Fisher shedrow.

#7 Gordon’s Jet has put forth two very good efforts this campaign, led by a smart runner-up showing in the David Semmes Memorial S. (G2) at Great Meadow in May. The chestnut son of Jet Away has been forwardly placed from the start in each of his pair of stateside jump races leading up to Wednesday, and the gelding seems poised to give a nice account of himself once again while making his initial appearance at Saratoga. This Irish-bred seven-year-old seems to have found his niche and gets the slight nod with Thomas Garner inheriting the ride.

Fisher’s #8 Welshman has been first or second in four straight outings dating back to October, and he comes off of a stout score in the Semmes Memorial in his latest endeavor. The $17,000 auction purchase was unplaced in his lone local outing prior to Wednesday, but the son of Flintshire is going good right now and has to be given a very long look against this solid cast. Regular pilot Graham Waters will be in the silks aboard the promising five-year-old gelding.

Of the pair of Keri Brion pupils in the field, #4 Historic Heart is the preferred one for me. This Irish-bred chestnut was a respectable fourth in the race in 2022, and the gelded son of Fracas will improve while making his second run of the season here. The six-year-old had a decent prep when fourth in a flat race on the lawn at Delaware Park last time out, and improvement from the contender is fully expected on Wednesday with Danny Mullins in the stirrups. I expect the top-three threat to be moving into contention in the latter stages of the tilt.

Smithwick Wagers

$10 win and place: #7 Gordon’s Jet ($20)

$10 exacta box: 7-8 ($20)

$1 trifecta: key 7 with 4,8 with all ($14)